From Darkness To Light

By , March 15, 2019

“From this day on I will bless you”
Haggai 2:19 (NIV)

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The future is so hard to see in this life. The apostle Paul properly said that we look through a glass “darkly”. The remarkable C.S. Lewis said words to the effect that life must be lived looking forward but can only be understood looking backwards.

In many respects this is so true and is one explanation why we sometimes stumble in life. If only we had known this or that was going to happen we would have altered our plans to accommodate the thing we otherwise did not see.

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Building An Empire From A Heap Of Ashes

By , March 14, 2019

“But David found strength in the Lord his God”
1 Samuel 30:6 (NIV)

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I only know of one other person in the entire Old Testament who found himself as deserted and alone as David at the time he “found strength in the Lord”. That sad person was Jonah in the living submarine, a great fish somewhere in the Mediterranean Sea. David’s story up to now has been like a hare before the hounds. King Saul has been chasing after him for many months.

David and his small band of men had just been dismissed by his only friend Achish. Achish was a ruler of a Philistine army. He told David that he had been a very loyal friend and he found no fault with him. However the other rulers did not like David so David had to go. It was politically incorrect to be seen with David it seems. So all David had was family and the little group of soldiers who had remained faithful so far.

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Bad Luck?

By , March 13, 2019

“The lot is cast into the lap,
but its every decision is from the Lord”
Proverbs 16:33 (NIV)

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There are a number of expressions in modern language that we need to think about for a moment. Someone will look at the sad circumstances of another and say, “Bad luck.” Or they might say, “What are the chances of that happening?” Or they might say, “That is your fate.”

What do these words, “luck, fate, chance” really mean? They are so commonly used by people. Are these words proper terms to describe what happens in life? Are there such things as luck, fate, and chance?

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Why would Jesus have to pray?

By , March 12, 2019

“Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.”
Luke 5:16 (NIV)

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Luke is often called the Gospel of prayer. Luke has more examples of Jesus in prayer and more commands by Him for us to pray than any other Gospel. Some heartfelt prayers are recorded only by Luke such as the publican 18:13 and the repentant thief 23:42. Luke alone gives us some especially touching prayers of Jesus such as His prayer that Peter’s faith fail not 22:32 and the prayer for His murderers 23:34

We read in the Gospels that Jesus spoke and the dead rose. He addressed the storm on the sea and it was calm. We are told that He knew the thoughts of those around Him, and that He knew about the future. So why would Jesus have to pray? It needs some biblical thinking to get the answer.

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The Light of the World

By , March 11, 2019

“You, oh Lord light my lamp.”
Psalm 18:28

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In Jesus’ time candles were only beginning to be used by the Chinese and a few other nations. In Palestine in Jesus’ time a lamp was a shallow bowl with a pinched lip to hold the wick. Jews did not like darkness and even cursed people by saying something like, “May your lamp go out in darkness.”  When a person was born blind or became blind in life Jews immediately thought the person or his parents were under the judgment of God for some grave sin.

The poorest homes in Jesus’ time considered the luxury of oil to burn in the lamp through the night to be a necessity. It was a sign of the most severe poverty to be without oil to light the night.

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